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Reading Review: Start Finishing – Charlie Gilkey

Posted on Aug 31st, 2023

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I’m glad from my reading so far this year I’ve managed to adjust how I do things, ever so slightly, for the better. With the few days delay to post last month’s book, after I finished it, I decided to take a step back and consider how I can bring my projects back on track. I asked around, asked GPT a ton of suggestions in different categories, and finally chose to read Start Finishing. The book has been fantastic to adjust my habits for the better to start completing my projects again, many thanks to the author Charlie Gilkey.

I highly recommend it to those who want to learn how to complete their own projects. The nine-step methods it teaches, to move from idea to a project which you can complete, helps to understand where you should focus. It helps to make a reality driven schedule for projects, it helps to work out how you address the challenges you face while you work on the project. The rule which stood out for me is the Five Project Rule. This is early on, so I couldn’t understand how I would choose which of my projects would be selected.

The concept which stood out for me would be the idea of a limit of active projects, with any given time scale, then focus on how they can benefit my vision, goals, and values. You could try it for yourself. First list all your projects, then decide how important they are to you. Note, the time scale mentioned can go from projects which take a day, to a week, or month, even a year. Go over your list, then decide what your best projects are, choose the ones which will benefit you the most. You can then which 5 you will put your focus on, I even built my own Kanban board for steps.

The key to making your projects more doable is to turn the names of tasks into rewarding obstacles. A rewarding obstacle is a task that has a clear, positive outcome and a clear, challenging obstacle to overcome.

Start Finishing: Chapter 4 – Convert Your Idea into a Project

It took me a while to decide what the 5 projects would be. If you consider what would reward the most, it makes the decision easier.

It has led to a smaller, cleaner, plan for how I can become regular here again, as well as finish off my projects. Instead of my projects all blocking each other, the lessons learned have helped me choose what I want to prioritize. To put it simply, I recommend you read this if you’d like to focus on your projects in a better way to finish them again!